At exactly 5.01am on Monday 20th March 2006, my life changed forever. Well, actually if you want to be pernickety, for the two days prior to that date, my life was already shifting in a direction I’d never expected.
Mr Jude was born!
Yes, I wanted the usual labour and birth that most people aspire to…no drugs, minimal intervention, etc. What did I get? Literally EVERY drug under the sun, intervention like you wouldn’t believe and even a team of student doctors “observing” throughout part of day two of my labour. But meh, I couldn’t care less by then. I was high as a kite on gas/air/pethidine (don’t do that stuff guys, it’s horrid) and then a full blown epidural. Jude…being Jude…was pretty happy where he was but eventually arrived earth-side a perfectly healthy 8lbs 11oz. He had little hairy shoulders and huge sideburns. Quite the picture!
Ways in which our world is a better place
In honour of the boys thirteen magnificent years of life, I wanted to write a piece dedicated to some of the ways in which Jude has made the world a better place.
- Education. More than anything in the whole world, Jude has taught us so much. How to think outside the box. How to just be yourself. How to love and accept things. I see Jude accepting so much and in equal measures this has the power to fill me with pride but also break my heart. Jude has taught us that life doesn’t have to be as complex as we so often make it. And finally, as with most special needs parents, I’ve also learnt many superpowers that I didn’t previously possess! Thanks Jude.
- Jude just needs to laugh and the sun shines that little bit brighter. Have you heard his laugh? It’s awesome. If we could bottle that, I’d sell it as therapy. I’ll try and record him this weekend.
- Emmeline’s world is certainly a better place because of her big brother. Their relationship is a source of enthralment. The way they interact; watching Emmeline cope with Jude’s anxiety as well as the absolute joy she experiences in having a playmate with the same sense of humour. Here is a little montage I created of the two of them last year – Emmeline chose the music – the first song is her favourite song in the whole world (Glasgow Love Theme) and the second was Jude’s favourite song at the time. Emmeline today asked me to make another video so I’ll try and do that this weekend.
- Jude has made the world a better place because without him, we wouldn’t have had, or currently have so many amazing people in our life. From our first ever paediatrician and the incredibly physio and OT who got Jude mobile to the music therapist in Cambridge who was the absolute highlight of toddler Jude’s week. They were the start of our expanding circle. The fantastic teachers and learning support assistants Jude has had over the years who were truly there for him. To everyone at his current school who completely blow my mind at the level of care they offer. I know Jude is content so internally I’m content too. People say that they could never send their child to a residential school but those people clearly haven’t visited a school like Jude’s. So if it wasn’t for Jude, these amazing people wouldn’t be in our life. Whilst people feel empathy towards us as parents of a special needs child, I feel sad for them they don’t have as many people in their life as we do. We’re blessed because of Jude.
- More importantly…the world is a better place because of Jude’s quirks. Ahhh some of his phases have been awesome. Those few months where Jude was obsessed with balancing shoes on door handles. I’d walk downstairs and every flippin handle would have a shoe laying across it. I felt like our house was possessed. The lining up stuff phase! Ok, this is still a phase in progress. Making people out of paper phase. Pushing that damn buggy around the garden phase – preferably with every garden item he could find balanced on top. That was definitely an interesting one.
- The world is a better place thanks to Jude because now you can’t walk into a lift without saying “Doors opening” when the lift (wo)man fails to do so.
- Jude has made the world a better place because he acts like a human filter. Literally filters people into trust/don’t trust camps. He seems to detect the good’uns and let’s me know in his own little way when someone isn’t worthy of our circle of trust. If Jude likes you then you certainly know about it. He knows how to love!
- Ice lollies wouldn’t be a major food group in this family if it wasn’t for Jude…I think that makes our world a better place, non?
- Ahhh the comedy Jude moments. Jude has made the world a better place because he’s taught me to not take anything too seriously. At the weekend, I was reminding my family of a situation I’ve never forgotten – I’ll rename it Pizza-gate. Jude was six, Elsa three and we were out for dinner with Elsa’s friend from nursery and her mum. We just went to the Pizza Express near to us. Anyway, dinner went well…not too much pain considering we were outnumbered in the adult:child ratio. Walking out the restaurant in a line between all the tables, I strode out with my friend, confident we’d had a successful evening. We both turned around as the door closed behind us all, looked down and there was Jude, munching on a crust of pizza. “Where the hell did you get that from?!” I asked, not sure why because he couldn’t tell me. My friend and I looked back into the restaurant to see a baffled looking little girl, staring down at her plate, clearly wondering where her piece of pizza had gone. Jude had only gone and swiped it mid-stride on the way out. Arrrghhhhhh! And no, I didn’t take it back. We walked rather promptly back to the car!
Happy birthday Mr Jude!
Jude has made the world a better place because he makes the world his own. He’s the most awesome young man you could imagine with a wicked sense of humour. So many people don’t give him the time of day because of whatever reason but that’s very much their loss. Jude loves nothing better than a chat. Normally about food but hey, you can try and sway the topic.
Happy birthday to our awesome Jude <3